The Dangerous Journey by Tove Jansson. Drawn & Quarterly, 2018. 9781770463202. 32pp.
I’ve been working my way through the enormous and wonderful Moomin: The Deluxe Anniversary Edition for years. Jansson’s black and white comic strips are delightful, and so is this reprinted, retranslated full-color picture book, which is also set in Moominvalley.
Susanna wakes up, complains to her cat, and declares that she’s wild and crazy before wishing for a bit of craziness on the landscape. She gets her wish, which sends her lazy cat spitting into the sky. The forest where she plays is suddenly a swamp. Her reflection is…off. And the sky is red hot. This isn’t the sort of adventure she was looking for, but don’t worry, she soon meets some kind strangers, and everyone ends up fine in the end (even the cat).
Painted pictures tell the story, along with rhyming text underneath. Jansson’s characters are the star of the story, but her painting of an erupting volcano was particularly spectacular. No idea how faithful the translation is to the original text, but I found it delightful in the way it expressed Susanna’s character, and I even enjoyed its rhymes.